Written by Dominic Wallace
Whilst the obvious resurgence of the bow tie in recent years has given the youth of today an opportunity to feel unique, as if pioneers of the latest fashion craze, those of us with a few more miles under the belt will appreciate that bow ties have long been the symbol of the ultimate gentleman. Classic bow ties exude a refined elegance and far from the loathsome leopard print or lego ‘bow ties’ teenage hipsters view as fashionable today, we present you with five reminders showcasing why bow ties shall never loose their aristocracy.
The most revered tie wearer of all time was British Prime Minister Winston Churchill. Churchill was a great advocate of the bow tie, and his affinity for donning such style served to thrust it into the public eye. None became more popular than Churchill’s classic navy blue bow tie featuring white polka dots, which united his ensembles and was periodically sported alongside a white pocket square, accenting the bow tie further and giving contrast to his darker suits. The bow tie was ultimately mass-produced as the ‘Blenheim’.
Just as bow ties themselves are destined to withstand the test of time, so too is fictional film character James Bond, the embodiment of sophistication, who, maybe more than any other, is related to his suave tuxedo, complete with midnight black Batwing bow tie. Bond’s bow tie is a truly classic symbol of the ultimate gentleman and a primary reason his character remains so popular and timeless.
With impeccable fashion sense and an adoration of tuxedos and tailored-made suits, Frank Sinatra defined class on every public outing. Sinatra believed strongly that a half-inch of shirt cuff should protrude from a jacket sleeve and that trousers should always suspend marginally above shiny shoes. The singer also refused to wear any color other than black after dark and was avidly against male jewelry. With a penchant for pocket squares and silk ties, Sinatra was at his most dashing when displaying one of his many bow ties.
Karl Marx, the German philospher, economist, sociologist, historian, journalist, and revolutionary socialist is well known for publishing The Communist Manifesto (1848) and Capital (1867–1894). Although some viewed his political outlook as misshapen, his fashion sense certainly was not. One of the earliest bow tie enthusiasts, Marx is considered to be one of the fathers of the bow tie boom.
American, Fred Astaire, is considered by most as the greatest entertainer of all time and his name has become synonymous with style and class. Verging on obsessive in the wardrobe department, Astaire was renowned for his choice of ties. Although his preferred style of neckwear was neckties, on formal occasions, he relished the opportunity to unleash his famous black or silver bow ties, for the ultimate showman’s appearance.
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